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Criminal Law Keyed to Gershowitz
State v. Colbath
Citation:130 N.H. 316, 540 A.2d 1212.
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*Case Brief Anatomy includes: Brief Prologue, Complete Case Brief, Brief Epilogue
- The Brief Prologue provides necessary case brief introductory information and includes:
- Topic: Identifies the topic of law and where this case fits within your course outline.
- Parties: Identifies the cast of characters involved in the case.
- Procedural Posture & History: Shares the case history with how lower courts have ruled on the matter.
- Case Key Terms, Acts, Doctrines, etc.: A case specific Legal Term Dictionary.
- Case Doctrines, Acts, Statutes, Amendments and Treatises: Identifies and Defines Legal Authority used in this case.
- The Case Brief is the complete case summarized and authored in the traditional Law School I.R.A.C. format. The Pro case brief includes:
- Brief Facts: A Synopsis of the Facts of the case.
- Rule of Law: Identifies the Legal Principle the Court used in deciding the case.
- Facts: What are the factual circumstances that gave rise to the civil or criminal case? What is the relationship of the Parties that are involved in the case. Review the Facts of this case here:
On June 28, 1985, the defendant wen to the Smokey Lantern tavern and started to talk to the female complainant. There was evidence that she directed sexually provocative attention toward several men in the bar, with whom she associated during the ensuing afternoon, the defendant among them. The defendant testified that he felt her breasts and bottom and that she had been rubbing his crotch. The two of them eventually left the tavern and went to the defendant’s trailer. It is undisputed that sexual intercourse followed; forcible according to the complainant, consensual according to the defendant.
During trial, the judge instructed the jury that evidence of the complainant’s behavior with other men was irrelevant. The judge did so due to consensual sexual activity being statutorily inadmissible due to the rape shield law. He was convicted of sexual assault. He appealed, arguing that the trial judge incorrectly barred the jury from considering evidence of the complainant‘s public behavior with men other than the defendant in the hours preceding the incident.
- Issue(s): Lists the Questions of Law that are raised by the Facts of the case.
- Holding: Shares the Court's answer to the legal questions raised in the issue.
- Concurring / Dissenting Opinions: Includes valuable concurring or dissenting opinions and their key points.
- Reasoning and Analysis: Identifies the chain of argument(s) which led the judges to rule as they did.
- The Brief Prologue closes the case brief with important forward-looking discussion and includes:
- Policy: Identifies the Policy if any that has been established by the case.
- Court Direction: Shares where the Court went from here for this case.